Best Albums of 2014
selected by Frans Robert from The Baltic Scene

Audrey Fall <BR>“Mitau”

Audrey Fall

This Latvian group debuted several years ago with just-a-decent EP, “Daylight Owls”, then took some time to rethink their existence. It resulted in a full-length purely instrumental post-rock and post-metal hybrid “Mitau”. A very cinematographic album where a lot of effort was spent to give each song its own narrative and develop a set of stories with pacing worth of a Hitchcockian thriller.

♪♫ Listen: “Petrina” + album stream

Audrey Fall on Bandcamp, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter.

Baltic Trail 2014 Compilation

Baltic Trail 2014 Compilation

Baltic Trail is a festival run by producers, musicians and activists from Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. All music on this post-gathering compilation was produced during collaboration sessions of 17 producers and singers from the three countries. A colourful collection of anything from minimal electronic to hip-hop, it showcases the variety of Baltics’ music offer.

♪♫ Listen: “Heart Trails” + album stream

Baltic Trail www, Bandcamp, Facebook.

Dirty Deal Audio <BR>“DDA/VA III”

Dirty Deal Audio

Dirty Deal Audio is a Latvian label focused, generally speaking, on beats of all kinds. Every year they release a compilation album with what they consider the best local music released over the last months. And it’s a great introduction into the modern Latvian music scene.

♪♫ Listen: “Reign Over Me” + album stream

Dirty Deal Audio on www, Bandcamp, Soundcloud, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter.

Future Folk Orchestra <BR>“Antarktīda kūst”

Future Folk Orchestra
“Antarktīda kūst”

When Future Folk Orchestra appeared on a Sofar Sounds session in Riga, it was the discovery of the evening. Similarly, the seven piece band’s new album “Antarktīda kūst” (Antarctica Is Melting) is one of the biggest surprises of 2014.

Mixing influences not only from around Europe, but also from Asia and Africa, the group updates traditional music(s) into one kaleidoscopic experience.

♪♫ Listen: “Antarctica is melting

Future Folk Orchestra on Soundcloud, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter.

Instrumenti <BR>“Iekams”


“Iekams” is a journey inwards, where Instrumenti made an abstraction of what they were before, started from the beginning again and completely reinvented themselves. It is a reflective album that perfectly suits winter, yet breaks the ice and goes into the bloodstream of time to our very roots. Wonderfully arranged, “Iekams” takes you upon a journey through time and space.

♪♫ Listen: “Lēna Uguns

Instrumenti on www, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and beehype.

Mr. Myster <BR>“Kolektiv Sub-konchez” EP

Mr. Myster
“Kolektiv Sub-konchez” EP

23-year-old producer from Riga, Mr. Myster impressed the Baltics’ club scene recently with his new EP, “Kolektiv Sub-konchez”. An impressive mix of modern r’n’b/techno/electronica constantly being chopped up and glued back, it should keep your mind busy while the body interprets the music in its own way.

♪♫ Listen: “Love & Peas” + album stream

Mr. Myster on Soundcloud, Bandcamp, YouTube, Facebook.

NiklāvZ <BR>“Blocks”


Niklāvs Sekačs aka NiklāvZ is a young and promising beatmaker and producer, living and working in Liepāja. Being part of Dirty Deal Audio crew, Niklāvz made a lot of progression last year, playing on Primavera Sounds. The feeling arises you will hear a lot more about him in the upcoming year, both in and outside Latvia.

♪♫ Listen: “Lonesome” + album stream

NiklāvZ on Bandcamp, Soundcloud, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter.

Pikaso <BR>“SVMN: B Puse” EP

“SVMN: B Puse” EP

On his second EP, Jānis ‘Pikaso’ Lipšāns brings in such universality to his hip-hop that you should quickly forget that you don’t understand a word from his (thoughtful) lyrics. For Latvia, Pikaso represents a new road he’ll hopefully keep on following on his future full-lengths.

♪♫ Listen: “Atpakaļ Nākotnē” + album stream

Pikaso on Bandcamp, Facebook, Vimeo, Twitter.

The Big Bluff <BR>“The Big Bluff”

The Big Bluff
“The Big Bluff”

Even though The Big Bluff is just a duo in its core, the raw rock ’n roll from their self-titled album will blow you away with its sheer energy. Having organised one of the best album presentations in 2014, Ilya Krumins and Matisse Tazans definitely deserve a spot in this list.

♪♫ Listen: “London Bridge” + album stream

The Big Bluff on Soundcloud, Bandcamp, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube.

The Coco’nuts <BR>“Appetizer” EP

The Coco’nuts
“Appetizer” EP

The Coco’nuts blends funk, swing, blues, rock and indie together in one tasty musical mix. They released their debut EP in 2014, which is an “Appetizer” for more. One of Latvia’s most unique bands, their sound and energy only grows when they appear on stage.

♪♫ Listen: “Sweetest Little Girl” + album stream

The Coco’nuts on Bandcamp, Soundcloud, Facebook, Twitter.